Agaciro admitted to global sovereign wealth funds’ body

Agaciro Development Fund CEO Jack Kayonga receives a cheque Rwf50m from the CEO of Water and Sanitation Company, Aime Muzola from staff contributions to the Fund in June this year. File

Rwanda’s Agaciro Development Fund has acquired full membership at the International Forum of Sovereign Wealth Funds (IFSWF), officials have said.

Jack Kayonga, the Chief Executive of Agaciro Development Fund told The New Times that Rwanda was admitted to the forum on Wednesday in Marrakech, Morocco where the organisation’s board meeting was convening.

“For the last two and a half years, they have been evaluating us and in their board meeting today (Wednesday), Agaciro Development Fund was announced as the newest member of the forum,” he said in a phone interview from Morocco.

Sovereign wealth funds with membership to forum are evaluated on performance and adherence to what is called the Santiago Principles, the best practices that sovereign wealth funds hold each other to.

Among them are governance and transparency.

“When you are a member, you are within an elite class and they should be able to recommend you for business or even co-finance with you in different ventures,” Kayonga noted.

Rwanda now joins the list of a few African countries that are members of the forum.

Other countries that subscribe to the forum are; Morocco, Nigeria, Angola, Botswana, and Senegal.

Kayonga however, highlighted that Agaciro Fund is the first non-commodity sovereign wealth fund in the region to join the forum.

“Other African countries are admitted mainly out of excesses of their natural resources,” Kayonga said.

IFSWF is a global network of sovereign wealth funds, currently representing over 30 members from different parts of the world.

Agaciro is Rwanda’s sovereign wealth fund initiated in 2011 to mobilise funds to help the country achieve self-reliance, maintain stability in times of shocks to the national economy and accelerate Rwanda’s socio-economic development goals.

Rwandans of all walks of life have since its establishment, been contributing towards the fund while it has also recorded some profits from the investments made.

“Since 2014, we have invested in Government T-bonds and commercial banks’ term deposits,” reads part of a post on the Fund’s website.

In 2013, the Fund was valued at Rwf20.5 billion before growing to Rwf41 billion last year.

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